A small 'brain fart' (idea).
One of the great things about paper is the fact that you can put pieces of paper side-by-side. This is great when you have to review a document or check difference between documents.
This 'feature' of paper is not supported well in the digital domain. eReaders and computers have a hard time mimicking this. However, using multi-touch screens, like Microsoft Surface, brings this concept closer to the digital domain. Then again, most people don't like to read from a screen. Reading from an eReaders seems to better (more paper-like).
I carpool to work. Yesterday on our way back we were talking about the affordances of paper vs. digital documents. And then we wondered: why can't we combine what eReaders are good at with what multi-touch is good at? We would then have a screen that could be integrated into our desks, giving us lots of freedom to move documents around, annotate and resize them, search on them, pile them, etc. But, because the screen is an eReader screen, the documents are readable too.
What do you think? Is this a good idea? Do you think this is possible? And, would this bring the paperless office closer?